Why I Serve Veterans With The Soldiers Project
By Daryl Bryant, LCSW, MSW
My career started in 1973 working as a Correctional Officer at San Quentin Prison. I promoted to a Correction Program Supervisor ( CPS-1) Social Worker position at Soledad Prison and managed an all gang housing unit. I eventually transferred to the California Youth Authority (CYA) as a Youth Counselor and worked at Washington Ridge Conservation Camp. While working within the system for ten years I was exposed to extreme violence and blood shed that resulted in suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Part of my recovery effort was to retrain and I learned the craft of custom boot making and shoe repair. Working with my hands and designing boots proved to be therapeutic and healing. However, I missed working with people and returned to college at California State University, Sacramento. I graduated with a Master of Social Work, MSW degree. I continued my education and became a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
Currently, I am semi-retired and have a private practice as a clinical therapist. I serve clients suffering from trauma and PTSD. Utilizing Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), cognitive therapy, stress reduction techniques and various clinical modalities that benefit recovery. In addition, I am a minister seeking to encourage people to overcome spiritual challenges in life.
I count it a privilege to volunteer as a therapist with The Soldiers Project.
I cherish our beloved America, and serve veteran warriors suffering from physical and emotional wounds of war. The tragedy of veteran suicide, homelessness, mental illness and broken families are the results of war weaken our nation. It is an honor to commit my skills and talents to support and comfort wounded veterans that currently serve or have served our nation.
I have developed a creative basic blacksmithing skills program as a method to reach out to vets. The Veterans Blacksmith Program, is a donation funded project that provides an opportunity to practice the primitive skill of blacksmithing. Isaiah 54:16 “I have created the blacksmith who fans the coals beneath the forge and makes the weapons of destruction. And I have created the armies that destroy.” I am convinced blacksmithing does not need to be a source for making weapons of destruction. Blacksmithing objects out of iron is therapeutic and healing.
Working with the mind and hands helps rebuild and heal the wounds of war.
Vets are welcome to blacksmith every second Saturday of the month from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM located at 15026 Stagecoach Way Rough and Ready, California.